Ahead of gameweek 12, Fantasy Premier League managers have been busy shuffling the midfield as they prepare for the festive period.
But who’s in and who’s out?
With Liverpool’s trip to Fulham the weekend’s most one-sided contest on paper, it was no surprise to see Mohamed Salah emerge as the player with the most net transfers in this week.
What was surprising was Jurgen Klopp fielding him for the full 90 minutes in a meaningless midweek Champions League fixture, making the Egyptian far less appealing as a captaincy option.
Midfielders have accounted for some of the biggest rises in ownership ahead of GW12. James Ward-Prowse’s assist against Brighton on Monday night, which cemented his status as his team’s top points scorer this season, triggered a scramble for his services.
With the Saints hosting bottom club Sheffield United on Sunday, he’ll be heavily fancied to deliver again.
Meanwhile Wilfried Zaha’s triumphant 18-point haul on his return to action last week has seen his stock rise, but this wave of enthusiasm may be premature.
While Zaha is undoubtedly the main man in the Eagles’ attack, he was playing against 10 men for the majority of that match and Palace are set to face one of the more daunting festive schedules.
Bye bye blues
Two names stand out amid the fire sale in the middle of the park.
The hamstring injury suffered by Hakim Ziyech saw his ownership plummet by over 600,000, which is comfortably the highest of any player since GW11.
For managers still keen on owning a piece of the Chelsea midfield, Christian Pulisic and Mason Mount have been the most transferred-in alternatives.
James Rodriguez meanwhile enjoyed a glittering start to his Everton career with six attacking returns in his first five appearances, but has been blanking ever since.
With a tough run of fixtures on the horizon for the Toffees, and Rodriguez set to miss his side’s game against Chelsea, many bosses seem to have concluded that there are better ways to spend £7.7m at the moment.
Bamford Leeds the charge
There has been plenty of movement up front too, with Patrick Bamford attracting the second highest number of net transfers this week.
Leeds’ forthcoming fixtures look promising and manager Marcelo Bielsa gave fantasy managers an added incentive by obligingly naming his starting line-up – which included Bamford – earlier this week.
Callum Wilson rounds out the top five most transferred-in players as Newcastle return to action at home to struggling West Brom.
With their GW11 fixture postponed, Wilson will have enjoyed a much-needed rest and there is the prospect of the rearranged match triggering a double gameweek for the Magpies later in the season.
Chelsea already have the game’s most-owned defender in Ben Chilwell and now two of his team-mates look set to join him – impressively, this trio also forms the three top-scoring defenders of the season so far.
Kurt Zouma’s fourth goal of the campaign ensured that he remains ahead of Chilwell for goals, while fellow Blue Reece James is just six FPL points behind his fellow Englishman.
Both players have seen their ownership rise by six figures since the 3-1 win over West Ham and won’t face an opponent currently in the top seven until January.
For the budget-conscious manager looking to fill a defensive slot as cheaply as possible, Neco Williams has been a popular bargain buy this week.
At just £3.9m the youngster has benefited from Liverpool’s defensive crisis, playing a part in all of their last three Premier League matches.
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